We are seated in the Victorinos' garage. It's more like a living room, complete with chairs, a table, and a rug. Four generations of Victorinos are talking with us--Hilda M.P. Victorino, her daughter Barbara Jean Ebinger, her grandson, Travis Medina, and her great-granddaughter, Jolene Lima.
Hilda M.P. Victorino
"I grew up in Kalaheo and Lawai," says Hilda Victorino. "We lived in Portuguese camp and every day we met our friends from Filipino camp by Kukuilono. From there, we'd walk to school. We had to go barefoot, too, sometimes 3 or 4 miles. Shoes were unheard of for kids in those days. Plus, we grew up poor, so we didn't have any glamorous things like that. We couldn't go out with friends a lot either. So the community Church Feast was really fun for us kids. We'd have a parade after church and then go to the park for refreshments."
Barbara Jean Ebinger
Like many other kids on Kauai, Barbara Jean Ebinger and her friends made their own toys. "We made wagons from old lawn mower wheels, rolled down hills in drums, and slid down hills on pieces of cardboard. We also went to the reservoir and caught prawns with Hibiscus petals. The prawns like the color red, so we made fishing poles, using the red petals as bait. After catching the prawns, we would boil them in a coffee can and eat them." Barbara owns her own shop on Kauai and finds that "there's lots of closeness, lots of ohana (family spirit) here. People on Kauai are not selfish, they're free-loving and generous."
"We used to go down to Lydgate Beach Park when we were kids," begins 14 year old Travis Medina. "We used to go swimming and then eat hot dogs, bread, and pork and beans," he says with a smile. "We also used to go up to Koke'e and pick plums. And at Thanksgiving, grandma would cook her special rice, hekka, and salad. After lunch we would play games."
What 10 year old Jolene Lima enjoys doing on Kauai is "playing tag, riding bikes, and going to the beach" with the people in her community. Jolene lived on the mainland but prefers her life here on Kauai. "There's lots of plants here" she says, " and the people are really friendly."